Inside the brand events and activations surrounding the big game, from warming lounges to virtual reality to a stadium sleepover
Temperatures may have been in the single digits for Super Bowl LII on Sunday, Feb. 4, but that didn’t stop football fans from getting out and engaging with brands at events across Minneapolis, including Super Bowl LIVE, the big game’s annual free festival. Here, we take a look at some of the best experiential marketing (shout out to the Minnesota-based brands who came out in force) surrounding the biggest football event of the year… go long. ...
Verizon Rewards ‘Up’ Customers With Warmth
Verizon, the official wireless provider of the NFL and the official sponsor of Super Bowl LIVE, the 10-day free fan fest for Super Bowl LII, offered its Verizon Up rewards members a respite from the frigid temps in a glass-walled lounge. The 24-foot by 40-foot activation helped drive buzz for Verizon Up, which rewards customers with perks for every $300 they spend on their monthly Verizon bill. Inside, Verizon Up customers could hang out, charge their phones and attend special events.
Fourteen NFL players (including Kirk Cousins, Kyle Rudolph, Kareem Hunt, Odell Beckham Jr., and more) visited the Verizon Up Members Lounge to surprise consumers and offer up prizes to NFL events, like tickets to Super Bowl LII. In addition, the Verizon Up Members Lounge served as a VIP viewing area for the Super Bowl LIVE concerts each night. Those concerts, sponsored by Verizon, took place on the adjacent Verizon Up Stage and featured artists like Rae Sremmurd, Syklar Grey and X Ambassadors. Verizon Up members were able to meet the artists in the lounge prior to their performances.
Leading up to the fan fest, Verizon was busy in the local community with NFL star Victor Cruz and NBA All-Star Karl Anthony Towns, who participated in a two-day effort to expose local kids to interactive technology experiences as part of Verizon’s $500,000 donation to STEM charities via the Verizon Innovative Learning education initiative of the Verizon Foundation. In Minneapolis, fans were the first to experience a new mobile learning lab before it embarked on a tour across the country. The mobile Explorer Lab combines 360-degree movie-quality video, special effects and hands-on educational gaming to “transport” students to simulated environments, such as outer space, giving them virtual experiences as scientists and explorers. Agency: Momentum Worldwide, New York City.
Into the Woods With American Express
American Express brought sexy back with its Amex x Justin Timberlake: Man of the Woods Listening Experience. To celebrate the release of Timberlake’s fifth studio album of the same name, the brand created a rustic pop-up environment for Platinum and Centurion cardmembers, and influencers like Issa Rae, Ciara, Terrel Owens and Tiki Barber, at Paisley Park, Prince’s former estate. There, Ryan McGinley, an artist who appears on the album, and Timberlake, discussed the creative process, songwriting techniques and their inspiration for the sound, look and feel of “Man of the Woods,” in addition to previewing tracks from the new record. Footage from the conversation was live-streamed on Twitter to keep digital fans engaged.
The remainder of the event was dedicated to unique experiences inspired by the album, like vinyl-making, silkscreen t-shirt printing and a unisex make-your-own scent station. Attendees were also treated to a performance by Prince’s band, The Revolution. Bonus: all proceeds from the event were donated to the National Park Foundation. Agency: Momentum Worldwide, New York City.